The Nilgiri Tahr is a mountain goat. It is easy to identify because of its horns, which curve backward from its head. Its Tamil name is Varaiaadu. It is also known as the Alpine Ibex. […]
Bodh Gaya in Bihar is one of the most sacred places for Buddhists. It is believed that, around 528 BC, a young prince, Siddhartha, who had given up his right to the throne and was travelling around the country in search for wisdom, was attracted by the peaceful surroundings there. He settled down under a Peepul tree, vowing not to move till he had received enlightenment. Three nights and days later, on a full-moon night in the month of Vaisakh (April-May in the modern calendar), he achieved what he was looking for – Bodhi. He spent the next seven weeks at the place, thinking about the enlightenment he had received. He came to be known as The Buddha, the Enlightened One. […]
When we hear the words ‘Grand Canyon’ we automatically think of Arizona, USA, and the spectacular canyon there. Few people know that we have a smaller, but still very impressive version of USA’s Grand Canyon right here in India. It’s called the Gandikota Canyon. You’ll find it in Andhra Pradesh’s Kadappa District. […]
Panchavati is a very important place in the Ramayana. It was the place chosen by Lord Rama to stay during his exile from Ayodhya. It was a beautiful place. It got its name from five banyan trees growing there, which are known as ‘vati’ in the local language. Panch Vati means five banyan trees. The River Godavari flowed nearby. Events that happened there led up to Lord Rama’s war with the forces of Ravana, king of Lanka. […]
The Golden Temple complex in Amritsar, Punjab, also known as Harmandir Sahib or Darbar Sahib, is considered the most sacred place by followers of the Sikh religion. The temple itself is only part of the huge complex, which includes a man-made lake, a very important part of the complex. It is known as Amrit Sarovar, or the Lake of Holy Nectar. Amritsar takes its name from the lake. Devotees come from all over the world to have a dip in the Sarovar. […]
Kalamkari is an art that was perfected around 3000 years ago! Traditionally, it’s done with organic dyes on cloth, using twigs as pens and brushes. It’s a complicated process involving more than 20 steps. Only some people in some regions of India know how to do it. […]
Hastinapur is a town near Meerut in Uttar Pradesh. It is an ordinary place now, but it is believed that at one time it was the capital of one of the greatest kingdoms of ancient India.
It is among the most important places mentioned in the Mahabharata, the story of the Kauravas and the Pandavas, two sets of cousins who were rivals. It was the capital of the Kauravas initially. After the Pandavas defeated the Kauravas in the Kurukshetra war, they made Hastinapur the capital of their new kingdom too. […]
Gokarna is a small town in Karnataka which has always been famous for its temples, and has now also become famous for its beaches.
The Mahabaleswar Temple here, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is considered very holy. It is called the Dakshina Kasi, or Kasi of the south, because it is as important as the Shiva temple in Kasi. According to legend, the Linga, the symbol of Shiva which is worshipped here, was brought directly from Mount Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva. […]
One of the oldest and holiest temples in India is the Vaishno Devi Temple. It is actually a cave temple, located on the Trikut mountain on the foothills of the Himalayas in Jammu. Interestingly, there are no idols in this temple, but a rock formation which is five-and-a-half feet tall, with three ‘heads’ or pindis, which is worshipped. Devotees believe that Vaishno Devi is a manifestation of Goddess Parvathi, or Shakti. […]